Orange County, CA — Preserving the water quality of Orange County, California’s beaches is of great concern to the citizens of Southern California, and the mission of the Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD) is to do everything in its power to prevent wastewater from contaminating the County’s 42 miles of Pacific coastline. To support that objective, Atkins—one of the world’s top-ranked engineering and design consultancies—has been selected by OCSD to provide the engineering, inspection, condition assessment, and construction-document preparation services the Sanitation District needs to engage in a series of key improvements to its wastewater management infrastructure.

OCSD is tasked with the safe and environmentally sound collection, treatment, and disposal of the 210 million gallons of wastewater generated each day by more than 2.5 million people who live in a 479-square-mile area of central and northwest Orange County.

According to Atkins project director Cenk Yavas, OCSD will be constructing a new Final Effluent Sampler Building at its Plant No. 2 site in Huntington Beach, where much of the County’s treated wastewater is discharged into the Pacific Ocean through a 10-foot-diameter outfall pipeline that extends five miles out to sea. The Sanitation District will also be rehabilitating its “short” outfall pipeline (a one-mile-long standby pipeline that carries treated wastewater out to sea when the primary pipeline is not in service), and one of OCSD’s surge towers (which help control pressure surges in the wastewater system).

The Final Effluent Sampler Building at Plant No. 2 houses the equipment that the District’s water-treatment specialists use to collect samples of the final effluent before the outfall is released into the ocean. While OCSD has performed various modifications and rehabilitations to the building and its equipment over the last 20 years, the useful life of the building and its equipment has come to an end. Therefore, OCSD has begun the process of removing the current building and its outdated equipment, constructing a new building, and installing a new effluent sampler pumping system and sampling ports. OCSD will also restore the surrounding landscape and improve the site’s drainage.

The Atkins team will provide detailed inspection and comprehensive rehabilitation planning services for the short outfall pipeline and Surge Tower No. 1. Atkins will also assess, specify, and participate in the installation of the new sampling equipment for the new Final Effluent Sampler Building.

“We’re responsible for designing all of the mechanical aspects of capturing representative plant effluent flows and bringing in materials for sampling,” said Yavas.

Additionally, Atkins will inspect and develop rehabilitation plans for more than 14,000 feet of underground utility tunnels that serve OCSD’s facilities.

“We won the contract with OCSD because they were impressed with our presentation, our methods, and our previous experience,” noted Yavas. “We’ve got a truly exceptional team working on this contract, and we were able to leverage our past success working on Orange County projects to demonstrate the effectiveness of our engineering approach.”